The Sports Pack

Sports No Comment

I finally ordered the Sports Pack from Comcast this weekend. It includes: Fox College Sports (Atlantic, Central, and Pacific), Fox Soccer Channel, Gol TV, NBA TV, CSTV, The Tennis Channel, and NFL Network. I know, quite a lineup.

I ordered it now because there was a special: $1.99/month for a year. I had planned on getting it for the start of the college football season. Last year there were quite a few times that I’d see a close score of a west coast game only to find that it was only on Fox College Sports Pacific. Leaving me out of luck. With the move of NFL Network to the Sports Pack a few months ago, getting the Sports Pack wasn’t even a doubt.

Now really isn’t the prime season for the Sports Pack. There aren’t any college sports going on. So the FCS channels and CSTV are running games from the past season, or ‘classic’ games. Unfortunately CSTV has most of its deals with non-BCS conferences and it seems that only the Pac10 likes to show games on Fox Sports.

I’m not much of a soccer fan. I catch World Cup Fever every four years but I usually recover from it rather quickly. I have always been intrigued by the European leagues but it seems like quite a commitment to really get into it. With two new channels full of soccer to watch I may learn something by accident. Oh, and David Beckham’s Soccer USA premieres tonight. That will make it to the DVR with an over/under of 8 minutes of watch time before the delete button is pressed.

The highlights of the Sports Pack will be the College Football on FCS, and games/highlights/shows on NBA TV and NFL Network. Plus who know what other college sports goodness awaits me: basketball, hockey, lacrosse. I could easily get hooked on any of those.

What’s keeping the Sports Pack from greatness? ESPN Classic and ESPNU. I blame ESPN for them not being available. They absolutely should be only in the Sports Pack. I’ll pay for them but people who don’t care about sports should not have to chip in. ESPN Classic is actually sent to my house, they just don’t have it in the lineup. I found out when I got my TV with an HDTV tuner. It scanned all the digital channels and found ESPN Classic. I can’t access it through my cable box. Some day soon I’m going to have such a desire to watch American Gladiators I’ll have to run another cable.

The Big Ten Network launches in a few weeks and I have a bad feeling that won’t be added to the Sports Pack in time. Apparently the Big Ten thinks its better than ESPN Classic and ESPNU and that Comcast will cave. I want to hang out with these Big Ten Network executives, they sound hilarious.

So far the Sports Pack doesn’t get high marks. But I hadn’t expected it to be anything special. It should be an entertaining month laughing at what they decide to put on all these channels until football gets started. Then I will have sports overload once again.

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